Need to make a serious complaint about softplay who would i contact??(95 Posts)
On sunday past i had my two little ones at softplay (5yrs and 2yrs) we go to softplays regularly but was first time to this one as it was newly opened. We were in about 20mins and my little one had went up to top of climbing part i heard a scream and cry like hes never done before and instantly within few seconds i was at top of where he was there was a member of staff there she said aw think may have got a freight or hurt himself. His foot was stuck on net and i got him out. I didnt speak to her i just took him down in a panic i then realised he wouldnt stand or put pressure on his legs. Within minutes where more staff over at us i asked the girl who had spoken before adter i seen her walking over with another staff member and i said so ehat exactly happened ehat did he get his foot stuck on??? There was no first aider, no incident report no nothing my partner stayed there to make there way home i went right to hospital. Turns out my little one has damage to his ankle and has broken his shin from under knee to bottom of leg he is now in a full leg cast.
The staff didnt contact us, i phoned today to be told no forms where done they didnt even have note of his name and that obviously staff didnt follow guidelines but theres also a problem with a language barrier from the girl who helped him as aparently doesnt speak greatest english? But was able to tell me his leg was caught on net and she got him out???then back tracked.
He has this on upto 8weeks and if didnt heal could need surgery.
Who can i contact and is there anything i can do???
I'm surprised so many people would leave their 2 year old alone because of a laminated sign telling them to .... I found that age exhausting as my DD was so clumsy and accident prone. If I found a soft play where I was told to walk off and leave her in any area I would ignore it or leave.
Regardless though, the accident was not handled correctly by the staff and it's clear op is a caring and concerned mum. I'm sure heading straight to hosp was the best decision. I hope your wee boy heals quickly op
It was all above board. It was dated with the day of accident and day signed.
You don’t actually have to sign it although it’s good practice for you to confirm the account is correct. In the case of serious injury the injured person isn’t always in a position to sign.
And sign or no sign, anybody with common sense would have gone in with a child of that age.
Even if the signage said you couldn’t go in? If there was a sign that said I couldn’t go in, I wouldn’t - but I’d be very uncomfortable with it and wouldn’t go back there. I’m that Mum that’s crawling through the tiny tunnel behind them to make sure they don’t hurt themselves but then my two have ASD. I have plenty of Mum friends with toddlers the same age who let them go into soft play areas alone and watch them from nearby.
They should have followed the correct procedures. However it does sound like a freak accident. It sounds like his leg was caught so he twisted it.
At that age though I always watched mine like a hawk. It takes seconds for something to happen.
Also regarding the supervision - they would take into account accepted practice. So if most people at soft play keep an eye on their kids from a central seating area and staff are aware and effectively OK this, then this is accepted practice. Obviously you do have a responsibility towards your own child but that does not mean it is your fault if equipment breaks or a staff member reaches him first and makes an injury worse. If there is a possibility that they think your lack of direct supervision was a contributing factor then they take that into account in deciding the amount of any compensation usually
I think you're getting some bad advice here OP
Yes accidents happen but any bad accident does need to be investigated to make sure it doesn't happen again! If your son was in an area meant for his age group then there may be something wrong with the equipment or the age marking
There may be signs saying play at your own risk however this will not stand up in court - companies or anyone can not legally sign away their responsibilities if negligence has led to injury of another person
Likewise there may be signs saying you should supervise however again this does not mean that they could use this to get out of the responsibilities for their equipment to be free from defect and appropriate for age
The accident book is a bit of a red herring as this is more an internal procedures things for them - having an accident book filled in correctly and quickly doesn't prevent accidents (unless you implement changes from previous accidents) and doesn't prevent the member of staff who may have hurt your son from lying about it. It does make investigations easier though
Their priority should be figuring out what happened, and making sure the equipment is safe and appropriate for the age it's signposted for. While they investigate they should make sure that the area is or was closed off so it doesn't happen again so they can prove it's safe
There is a higher duty of care towards children than adults so you may be able to claim compensation based on the injury alone as evidence of negligence as it's not a simple fall or knock - quite simply it shouldn't have happened unless your son was acting recklessly (eg climbing unspervused in an area he wasn't supposed to be in). I'd approach a solicitor sooner rather than later so they can begin investigations
I have indirectly supervised my child before. They are playing and I’m not hovering over them. They’ve gone up the slide and I’ve waited at the bottom. They’ve crawled through a tunnel and I’ve watched without peering through or standing over it. They’ve climbed somewhere and I’ve waited at the bottom and waved when they’ve reached the top. That’s all fairly indirect; my eyes weren’t on them the entire time. All things I’ve seen other parents do too.
I don’t think I’d walk off whilst my 2 year old was at soft play but I might not be rushing around after them either.
@NoAngel1 please do explain to me how it is age appropriate for a 2 year old to be left unsupervised?
I don't think anybody here has suggested that every single child should have adult supervision in soft play, but I don't know anybody who would not supervise a 2 year old.
Nobody is making assumptions. Op admitted she wasn't supervising her 2yo. All I asked was if she chose to leave him unsupervised or if it was a crèche set up where another adult was supervising him on her behalf.
First port of contact is whoever owns the softplay.
If not happy with that, then health n safety. Should be available via gov.uk
The comments about the OP not supervising her child are disgusting. She clearly says he was in an age appropriate area, adults weren’t allowed in and she was at his side immediately. I have literally never seen every single child have an adult attached to them in a soft play. So many perfect parents exist only on the internet.
Stop blaming the OP and assuming she was in some way not supervising her child. Do you all sit and stare at your children whilst they sleep also?
I think it's 100% been an accident, that she has caused.
Ffs. How on earth can you come to this conclusion? We could do away with the entire jury system with you on board.
My son got a spiral fracture going down a totally average slide - his boot sole slowed down his leg and it twisted. I was standing at the bottom and saw it happen, you would never have believed that it could cause an injury like that. When you see the consultant they will ask you about how it happened, after our app I was copied into a letter to our gp stating he believed that it wasn’t a NAI - when I googled that I found out it meant non accidental injury. I wonder what they will report about this?
The good news is that they heal super fast at that age and he will probably be able to go back to nursery once the hard cast is on - mine missed about 10 days and then was able to go back, they used a buggy to take him to the garden and he scooted about on his bum
@SoupDragon I know plenty of people who would send their children into age appropriate play areas.
At 2 years old, it isn't "age appropriate" to not supervise your child, regardless of what a random soft play sign might imply.*
So yes I stand by my point. If she knew her 2 year old was in there alone, was she choosing to leave him unsupervised or did she think it was somebody else's responsibility?
Either way I think the blame lies with the parent. Because that's the point of parental responsibility. You have to actually be responsible for them.
Completely agree with Mangolover. You keep saying yourself he is just a baby, only 2 so why you were not watching him closely is a mystery to me.
I genuinely don't know anybody that would send a 2 year old alone into soft play
You don't know anyone who would send their 2 year old into an age appropriate play area? Do you only know helicopter parents?
I don't think it really matters what the signage says.
Common sense tells you if you have a two year old you don't leave them unsupervised in places like this.
It's still you that has parental responsibility for the child and you that has to explain how they were injured to a doctor and why you weren't watching.
The signage is a silly excuse in my opinion. And an easy way for lazy parents to justify not watching their kids.
Realistically it's you that has parental responsibility for your child. If you were not supervising your 2 year old, who did you think was? Who did you think was checking he wasn't hurting himself? Or other children? Or being hurt by other children? Because unless you thought this was some kind of crèche situation where staff were responsible for supervising your child, then you knew full well he was unsupervised. And sign or no sign, anybody with common sense would have gone in with a child of that age.
Sorry if that goes against the grain but I genuinely don't know anybody that would send a 2 year old alone into soft play, and then be silly enough to complain the staff couldn't explain what had happened.
But good luck with your compo claim. Hopefully you won't have to explain that part 🤷♀️
@mangolover - OP said on page 2
I phoned today and was told there was no form they had no details of his name or the incident etc. Within half an hour my partner received a call to his phone (number he gave as he left)"from the manager who was on that day and spoke to us. She said her staff hadnt followed the procedure if we could get in to fill in accident form etc anytime now and that there must have been a language barrier and communication problem with girl who told us what happened etc
They clearly know that they did not follow the correct procedure and have tried to rectify this.
I would hope that in addition to the accident forms, that they would review their equipment for safety.
But, like others, I am not sure what you are hoping for, OP.
Was it netting you’re supposed to climb, or the stuff round the edges that acts as an enclosure? If it’s the latter the holes really shouldn’t be big enough to get their foot through, and stuff to climb generally has quite big gaps.
I would report to local council as a riddor, and in addition contact a solicitor as they did not follow procedure and another child could get injured, you are also going to incur cost as time off work etc. Even if they state at own risk, it still has to be safe.
Why do people not read - it’s infuriating! Not only did OP explain but multiple people have asked and been answered.
I am shocked at some of the responses - this little one has had a very nasty and very painful injury. The company can’t / won’t tell her what happened, and they haven’t followed safety procedures. The child can’t go to nursery; the parent has loss of earnings and the parent was following the rules set out by the business. Accidents do happen but she doesn’t even know what happened.
She’s lucky that, with a serious injury and not being able to explain how it happened, the hospital didn’t call social services - I’ve known this happen to two people when they didn’t see exactly what happened when their child was injured.
Unpopular opinion 👋 but why were you not supervising your child?
Some people need to read the OPs posts, especially the one about the sign saying no adults allowed in the soft play area. And that the sign said the area was for age 2yo and up. So OP adhered to the rules and perfectly correctly assumed it was safe for small kids.
My friend’s 3 year old son managed to break his arm at my son’s first birthday at a local leisure centre. It was just a bouncy castle, foam cubes and mats. These things happen, none of us ever worked how he managed it. Accidents happen when kids play, the staff member probably has no more idea than you how it happened. Speculating that the staff member did it helping your son is awful, the injury may not of hurt straight away for many reasons. People these days always seem to be looking for someone to blame.
Unpopular opinion 👋 but why were you not supervising your child?
Yes it is awful they haven't contacted you to fill out an accident form or handled it properly. Yes that's a health and safety matter.
But it's a bit bloody cheeky complaining when you couldn't be bothered to supervise him yourself in the first place isn't it? It's not the staffs job to inform you of what happened!
Most soft plays have separate areas for under 3s and most parents wouldn't ever leave an under 3 without supervising them as they go.
I have a disability and a 3 & 5 year old. We don't get to soft play very often because either my partner has to be with us or it has to be on a day I know I can crawl around with them which is very rare. I'd never not watch them though!
I'm flabbergasted you could complain on those grounds yet your child wasn't important enough to actually supervise at the time. What if he had injured another child? What if the damage had been worse? My child got concussed at soft play and needed a CT scan, and that was all witnessed. We could explain what had happened to the many doctors that saw him in A&E.
Without outing myself....this is my area, so...
This incident is a RIDDOR and must be reported by the soft play itself to the H&S authority.
They should have filled in an accident form, taken details from you and taken photos of the area that it happened.
It is also good practice to follow up after 24 and 48 hours and take note of this.
All staff present should give a statement. This is done internally.
Contact the management or owner immediately, ask for their most recent ROSPA report and enquire as to when you expect to hear from the H&S team.
They will be in huge trouble for not following procedure properly.
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